Disney once again finds itself in the position of having a movie it no longer wants. Mel Gibson
's movie "Apocalypto," which Disney was supposed to release on Dec. 8, is "being shopped" to other potential distributors, sources tell me.
One potential distributor for "Apocalypto" is Lions Gate, an independent company with a history of rescuing distressed projects. In the past they've picked up Kevin Smith
's "Dogma" and Michael Moore
's "Fahrenheit 9/11" when Miramax was prevented from putting them out by their own agreements with Disney.
This column was the first to speculate more than a week ago that since Gibson's arrest for drunk driving and the scandal involving his anti-Semitic tirade, Disney would not want to invest any money into "Apocalypto," which already was an iffy project at best.
A spokesperson for Lions Gate declined to comment on whether the company had talked to Disney or Gibson. At the same time, a reliable insider who knew the players in this game assured me that Disney was quietly shopping the film and that Lions Gate was first on its list of hopeful buyers.